• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Analyse how Stevenson uses setting atmosphere and characters to help the reader interpret a sense of danger, threat and horror.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Analyse how Stevenson uses setting atmosphere and characters to help the reader interpret a sense of danger, threat and horror. The story of The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde was written in the Victorian times. The Author of this book was Robert Louis Stevenson. The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde originated from a dream that Robert Louis Stevenson once had. Upon waking he recalled 'a fine bogey tale' and immediately set about writing it down. When Robert Louis Stevenson had completed writing the book, he showed his wife who said that the novel lacked allegory this meant that the story didn't have enough 'Good against Evil' this enraged Stevenson who threw it into the fire and started again. He wrote for 6 days non stop and recreated a better and improved version. Laudanum was a wildly popular drug during the Victorian era. It was an opium-based painkiller prescribed for everything from headaches to tuberculosis. Victorian nursemaids even spoon fed the drug to cranky infants, often leading to the untimely deaths of their charges. Originally, Laudanum was thought of as a drug of the working class. As it was cheaper than gin it was not uncommon for men and woman to binge on laudanum after a hard week's work. Use of the drug spread rapidly. Doctors of the time prescribed it for almost every aliment. ...read more.

Middle

This is the point when the reader is first told about the evil Mr. Hyde hidden in the novel. By setting the story at a particular time, the narrator is increasing the sense of foreboding and fear. His curious comment about 'the end of the world' introduces the supernatural other-worldly theme of the novel. Setting our first encounter with Mr. Hyde in daylight might have been less effective. Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is set in Victorian London, when Stevenson was alive. Contemporary readers would have been interested in the setting because the novel would reflect in some way the society in which they lived. More importantly, society in Victorian times was deeply divided between the slums of the poor, who struggled to exist and the lavish lifestyles of the rich. This divide in society is useful for an author exploring the divided psychology of the self. Narrative structure is particularly important in novels. In Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson uses a number of narratives to build up a sense of mystery and suspense. Contemporary Victorian readers would have read Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde as a mystery story, wondering throughout about the connection between the two men. The narrative point of view here is crucial in revealing the truth. The story opens with a third person narrative. We are told about Mr Utterson; his personality, lifestyle and qualities. ...read more.

Conclusion

I found that the part of the story containing the most suspense was when Jekyll had locked himself in his room. Stevenson describes what goes on in this extract. But the words were hardly uttered, before the smile was struck out of his face and succeeded by an expression of such abject terror and despair, as froze the very blood of the two gentlemen below. They saw it but for a glimpse, for the window was instantly thrust down; but that glimpse, had been sufficient, and they turned and left the court without a word. In silence, too they traversed the by street; and it was not until they had come into a neighbouring thoroughfare, where even upon a Sunday there were still some stirrings of life, that Mr Utterson at last turned and looked at his companion. They were both pale; and there was an answering horror in their eyes God forgive us! God forgive us! This creates a very strong and shocking image in the readers mind and builds up the suspense. The reader wants to know what caused Dr Jekyll to react in such horror as it obviously disturbed Enfield and Utterson considerably. Mr utterson is described relieved to be denied admittance into Dr Jekyll's home. Mr Utterson went on to describe Dr Jekyll's house as a," house of voluntary bondage", with an" inscrutable recluse", in which he preferred not to be admitted into. While here he is told about DrJekyll's strange confinement to his cabinet. Hasan Ehsan 10BL ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Robert Louis Stevenson section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Robert Louis Stevenson essays

  1. Explore the ways in which Stevenson uses setting to enhance the readers understanding of ...

    Perhaps Stevenson tried to show the difference between the wealthy and respectable side of London and the shameless, cruel and violent side of the capital of Britain. During the 1800s Soho was considered to be the lower-class part of London. Therefore it's no surprise that Hyde's house is in Soho.

  2. Explore and analyse the significance of the setting in “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” ...

    and that it is not wet or dry, it is in between. "Premature twilight" similarly portrays the image of being in between phases and change. In my opinion, the twilight represents devolution of the character and that he has no control over the changes, and it will come anyway.

  1. On page fifty-four, there is another good example of how weather can play a ...

    Another theme is shown when the Jekyll/Hyde double in the laboratory is described as having '...a mask upon his face.' This shows the dual nature of Jekyll/Hyde. The weather also plays a big part in the story, it effects it by making the atmosphere feel real and heightening the horror.

  2. How Stevenson uses his techniques as a writer to present character and atmosphere in ...

    It's the most revealing, intriguing, and powerful chapter of the entire novel. Jekyll's inner experiment with good and evil are explored and the dire consequences lay before the reader. It is important to see in this chapter that in Hyde, you have no Jekyll, but in Jekyll there is always

  1. Duality in Dr.Jekyll and Mr.Hyde

    Yet Stevenson's story doesn't have a happy ending. Jekyll is able to admit that after a few months of experimenting with Hyde, eventually the little man's demands became increasingly extreme, seeking more and more power. Soon Jekyll has no control over Hyde, who appears by himself whenever Jekyll dozes off to sleep.

  2. Show How Stevenson Through Themes, Language and Setting Creates a World of Double Standards ...

    a very simple way, but the reader does need to look deeper within the text to find the relation. Near the end of the book Jekyll who is slowly being eclipsed by Hyde confines himself to his laboratory to protect others from himself.

  1. How does Stevenson create an atmosphere of suspense and horror in "Dr Jekyll and ...

    Enfield says "It sound nothing to hear, but was hellish to see." But the description he gives creates a clear image of what went on. The reader would be horrified at how a man could show no mercy, not even to children who are considered innocent and defenseless.

  2. " How effective is the setting in creating tension and suspense in Stevenson's works?"

    they would always expect someone to be murdered at that point or for something else terrible to happen. This is only one example of Stevenson as a classic author of chilling thriller stories. In his narrative, Stevenson gives the reader the feeling of discomfort as he uses short sentences.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work